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Baccarat side bets explained: How to beat the house edge

Profile Picture: Simon Young

Simon Young

March 2nd, 2021

Baccarat is loved for its simplicity. You have just one decision to make every round, and after that, the dealer does all the work. In fact, there is so little strategy involved (aside from betting on Banker rather than Player, since it has a marginally lower house edge) that for some players things may get a little dull after a while.

As sure as night follows day, the casino people will find a way to spice things up for you. After all, they don’t want you getting up and leaving.

For that reason, just as there is in blackjack, you can find side bets available at the baccarat table. The type of side bet varies if you are online, like at TwinSpires Casino, or in a live casino. The side bets will also vary according to which country you happen to be in. Confused? Don’t be! Here is our simple guide to baccarat side bets.

And that house edge? You’ll never beat it, but we show you the odds, so you know at least that you can bring it down with smart betting decisions.

Baccarat Side Bets and House Edge

Here is a definitive list of what you might find as you enjoy your favorite table game.

  • Bellagio Match: You need a Player three of a kind for a 75:1 payout (house edge 5.27%), or Banker three of a kind for a 68:1 payout with an 8.57% house edge
  • Super 6: If the winning banker hand totals six, you get a 12:1 payout, but the house edge is an eye-watering 29.98%
  • 3-Card Six: 100:1 payout if both the Player and Banker get a 3-card six hand. It’s 8:1 if one hand does. Hold tight as there’s a 13.37% house edge
  • 4-5-6: Favored in Atlantic City, you guess the total value of each hand. 4 is 3:2, 5, and 6 pay 2:1
  • Royal Match: At some London casinos where you bet on the Player or Banker drawing a king and a queen in the first two cards. It’s 75:1 for a suited king and queen, 30:1 unsuited. And it has a player-friendly house edge of 2.13%
  • Either Pair: In some online games if either the Player or Banker gets a pair with the first two cards, there is a 5:1 payout
  • Perfect Pair: Both paired cards need to be of the same suit for a 25:1 payout
  • Rabbit Play: Sometimes seen in Las Vegas, which is a suited three of a kind (500:1), unsuited three of a kind (50:1), suited pair first two cards only (15:1), unsuited pair first two cards only 7:1. Overall there is an 8.07% house edge on the Player and a 9.31% house edge on the Banker
  • Egalite Bets: Payouts on a range of specific ties, such as 80:1 payout on Player and Banker both scoring nine
  • All Red/Black: Sometimes found at live casinos where all red cards pay 22:1 and all-black cards get 24:1
  • First Two Cards Same Suit: 28.7:1 on Player (house edge 4.20%) and 28.6:1 for Banker with a house edge of 3.95%
  • Unlucky 8: That your chosen hand will be the losing one with a total of 8 points – with a payout of 8:1
  • Lucky 8: That your chosen hand will win with eight points, paying out at 4:1 but with a 13.65% house edge on Player and a 16.60% house edge on Banker
  • Double 8: That both the Player and the Banker shall end up with eight points, paying out at 15:1
  • Quik: Where you bet on the combined points total for the Player and Banker. 0 is 50:1, 18 25:1, 1, 2, 3, 15, 16, 17 is 1:1, 4 to 14 is a loss. This is an 8.155% house edge across the board

You Win Some, You Lose Some

As you can see from the many side bets we have mentioned, there is a pretty poor house edge on all side bets. Although they can be fun when you do find them, side bets are not a profitable play. But if you really wanted to do so, see if you can find the Royal Match in a London casino, where the house edge is just 2.13%.

Play Baccarat at TwinSpires Casino

If this has got you in the mood to play baccarat, sign up for your TwinSpires Casino account and make sure you claim your welcome bonus. Then head to the baccarat tables and have some fun!